Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Z IS FOR APRIL JUST ZIPPED BY

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!
Today is the last day of the A to Z challenge and I made it to the end without missing a day. In fact, the month just ZIPPED by...hehehhheheee! 


I loved sharing with my wonderful blog buddies my thoughts on life, my favorite recipes, and of course, my new debut novel, In the Shadow of Greed. Someone yesterday called me a new book mamma. That's exactly what it felt like on release day. 

I really enjoyed all the different blogs and the wonderful, creative people I have met through A to Z challenge. One central theme was very obvious to me during this month of blog hopping. We all, in one way or other, are seeking that one thing that is just beyond our reach. All I can say is please keep reaching for your dream. Don't let anyone talk you into giving up.

Most of the bloggers I met were writers, all at different stages of their writing career. This month, I hopped over on huge hurdle in my own writing career. I finally found a publisher who was willing to take a chance on me and publish my first book. Of course, this is only a baby step, but it's an amazing step in the right direction.

One thing that took me by surprise was the overwhelming work that went into posting a different topic every day. Like I have said before, I don't write very fast. That includes writing post. I fuss over every sentence, ever word. Sometimes, an idea just came to me and I would run with it, not really knowing where it would take me. Other times, I  would write an entire post and end up deleting it because I just didn't like it. And then there were those days when I had nothing, zip, zero.I don't know where the idea finally came from, but I got something down.


This may be a little vain--so please bare with me--but  I really loved watching my pageviews grow this month. A couple day ago, I hit, in my mind, the magic number--5000 pageviews. I wish I knew who was stopping by for a visit each day. I would love to know who you are and where you are from. 

What's next on my blog now that the A to Z challenge has come to an end? Well, I decided that as much as I enjoyed the daily contact, I really don't have the time to post every day---especially if I plan to get my third book done before the beginning of the summer. My WIP--work in progress--has really been ignored the last few weeks. AND...my characters don't like to being ignored. In fact, they hate it. Since I'm not writing their story down fast enough, they have decided to gang up at me at three in morning. Not kidding here. I'm serious. They  have been yakking up a storm while I should be sleeping. 

The one thing became very clear during this challenge. I need to learn how to manage my writing world with my other world. I have a wonderful life completely separate from my writing. But I've not been very good at dividing myself between the two worlds. They are both so important to me. But I can't keep up this schedule without it taking it's toll. I need down time where neither world needs me for just a little while. Maybe a few of my writing buddies have a little advice they could share about how they manage their time. 

This challenge was a lot of work for everyone. But I'm very proud of all of us who kept going to the end. We can all pat ourselves on the back for stepping over the finish line. I hope all of you continue to come by here and visit. Until then, it has been a blast. 

((HUGS TO ALL))
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed
Available at: Crimson Romance ebooks | Amazon | B&N | iTunes


Monday, April 29, 2013

YEEHAW! IT'S OUT Y'ALL! THIS IS MY RELEASE DAY!


Today is my RELEASE DAY for my debut novel, IN THE SHADOW OF GREED. Y is for YEEHAW! IT'S OUT Y'ALL!  I can get away with the whole YEEHAW thing because once a Texan gal, always a Texan gal.

The moment  has finally come!!! I want to shout it out to the world because this is such a major accomplishment for me. My dream has come true and dreams should be celebrated.


I wish I could have a virtual cake party for all of my wonderful blog family. Here is my baby on it's release day. 


If you want to visit IN THE SHADOW OF GREED in its new home, here are the links: Amazon | B&N | Crimson Romance ebooks |iTunes

That is it for today. I wish everyone a great day and hope you are reaching far to find your dream.

((HUGS TO ALL))
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed





Saturday, April 27, 2013

X IS FOR XTRA! XTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!



Hi Everyone!
Happy Saturday. I can't believe I'm on X. When I began the A to Z challenge on the April 1st, I was a bit overwhelmed. But here I am almost at the finish line. I hope you have enjoyed a few of the topics I decided to post.

I cheated again with the letter X because I wanted to give one more last desperate shout-out for my new release, In the Shadow of Greed. It's coming out in two days! So, X is for Xrtra! Xrta!, Read All About It--In the Shadow of Greed is Out in TWO DAYS!!!

Making it to this point in my career as a writer has been such a great ride. When I wrote that first sentence three years ago, I never even dreamed of having my name on a book cover. I don't dream about things I think are impossible. For instance, I would love to go in space one day---see the world we live on in a totally different perspective. But I know that will never happen. Why dream about it?

That lack of confidence in myself I think stems from way back in my childhood to the day I found out that I had to repeat the second grade. I think from that moment on, I didn't think I was very smart. I have fought/challenged that thought my whole life.

If you knew me, that statement would probably shock you. Some people think I'm so together, so confident--can and will tackle anything. But we all have those doubts that live deep within us that we don't share. Well, I'm sharing because I was so wrong to see myself in that light. Like my mother use to say, "God doesn't make anything that isn't perfect. You have a great head on your shoulders. Use it!" Of course she would always add, "Nancy, it's not going to be easy, but nothing worth having ever is."

That is advice to live by--and I have. Here is my dream all ready to hit the virtual bookshelves on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Crimson Romance and iTunes in two days, 29 April 2013. If there is one thing I would love to have given you during this A to Z challenge is the push you need to follow your own dream. Please...I have faith in you. Have faith in yourself!



  
Excerpt for In the Shadow of Greed

He thinks I’m dead. Sarah’s coming. Help her!
The voice quivered inside Jason’s head. He pushed away from the pillar and froze. No one was there. His gaze fell back to the woman in the bed. His eyes narrowed and he clenched his jaw, biting down so hard, pain shot up his inner ear.
The next instant, a petite woman with long, straight, raven hair and the most beautiful, hazel eyes he had ever seen charged through the trauma unit. A security officer followed close behind and grabbed her arm, stopping her from moving any farther into the restricted area.
Jason stared at the woman in the bed and back to the woman by the door. He knew, without a doubt, her name was Sarah. His mind raced for an explanation.
“Ma’am, you can’t be back here.” The guard tried to pull Sarah back through the doors.
Sarah yanked out of his hold. The expression on her face was intense, unyielding. “Like hell I can’t. My sister is here. She needs me.”
The charge nurse moved from behind a counter of the nurse’s station and stood next to the security officer. “How can I help you?”
The nurse’s low, gentle voice seemed to have a soothing effect on Sarah. “Hanna Tu.” Her voice shuddered.
Jason couldn’t take his eyes off Hanna’s sister. In an instant, she transformed from a stiletto wearing, ice-dragon on the war path—just the kind of woman he disliked—into a frightened, desperate woman whose vulnerabilities brought out his protective instinct.
As her eyes wildly searched the trauma unit, the nurse reached for Sarah’s arm and guided her toward the doors.
“We’re still assessing your sister’s condition. I’ll have one of the doctors come talk to you in the waiting room as soon as they can. She’s in good hands, I promise you.”
 “I need to see her. I need to know she’s okay. The police wouldn’t allow me into her apartment. No one has told me anything. There was so much blood.” She sucked in a deep breath as tears clouded her eyes. “Please let me see her for a moment.”
Her eyes narrowed on the cubicle surrounded by a curtain. One of the nurses moved the fabric aside and left carrying a tray of vials. Sarah’s gaze fell on her sister. “Oh God! Hanna!”
She took a step toward her sister, but her body began to tremble and her knees buckled. Jason rushed forward and caught her as her body collapsed. With one arm wrapped around her waist, he used his other hand to lift the badge that hung around his neck and flashed it at the nurse. “She’s with me.”
He then found an empty chair away from a direct view of the cubicle and lowered Sarah into it. He knelt, keeping his arm around her. Her body shook violently and she gasped for air. The charge nurse brought over a cup of water and handed it to Jason. He brought it to Sarah’s lips.
“Drink, Sarah, it will help.”
She sipped the water and closed her eyes, taking in several deep breaths. “W-who hurt her? W-why?”
“We don’t know, but we’ll find out. He’ll pay for this.”
Sarah finally glanced up at him and pulled away. “Who are you?”
And the ice-dragon’s back. Jason clenched his jaw to keep a smile from spreading across his face. He couldn’t put his finger on the why, but this woman intrigued him. “Detective Jason McNeil.”
“Why are you here and not out finding the person who hurt my sister?”
Don’t let her push you away. She needs you, we need you.
Jason was taken aback by the weak, small voice in his head. What the hell was going on? Finding his voice, he said, “Someone tried to kill your sister.” He glanced toward Hanna’s cubicle. A crushing anger boiled up from deep within his gut. “The guy who attacked her has killed at least three other times we know about and he didn’t mean to leave Hanna alive. I’m not giving him a chance to finish the job.”
Oh God, he’s here… He’s here! Don’t let him near Sarah!


Here is where you can order In the Shadow of Greed. If you like my book---or any book, please take a minute and write a review. Authors live and/or perish from  reviews. So take a moment and just write a couple sentences of about how you felt about the story.

Amazon | B&N | Crimson Romance ebooks |iTunes


Hugs to all,
Nancy C. Weeks

Friday, April 26, 2013

W IS FOR LONI LYNNE’S DEBUT NOVEL, WANTED: ONE GHOST.

Believe in Fate!

Happy Thursday, everyone,


Today, I’m delighted to introduce you to a wonderful author, Loni Lynne. W is for Loni Lynne’s debut novel, WANTED: ONE GHOST.

Loni was the first person I met the day I joined Maryland Romance Writers. I can’t tell you how nervous I was walking into that meeting almost thirty minutes early. Loni gave me a big smile and made me feel so welcome. Moments later, she had me helping set out snacks. I have had such a wonderful time getting to know her.

I’m going to do something really different with this post. I would like to you meet Loni in her own words.  After she tells us a little about herself, I get to interview Loni’s hunky ghost, James Addison. That’s right, I’m interviewing a ghost!  Well, he’s not a ghost now, but he was…I think I will just let you met him and discover how unique he is for yourself. But first, Loni, I can’t thank you enough for visiting today and bringing James with you.  Can you please tell all of us a little about yourself. 


Loni Lynne…

My name is Loni Lynne and I’m a stay at home mom, domestic goddess, U.S. Navy Veteran and lover of all things vintage/shabby-chic/Victorian and antique. From china cups and tea sets to lace doilies crocheted by hand (my grandmother made the best) I believe a touch of femininity never goes out of style.  Growing up all over the country, I have been blessed with experiencing a good deal of culture and lifestyles. Much like my personality, I have eclectic tastes in what I like to read and write. There is no 'one' genre in which I settle for. 

God and fate have been big influences in my life. Both have taken me places I never thought I’d be, both in the physical sense and in the spiritual. I wrote brief stories and snippets of life as it happened to me in my youth, and was encouraged by my teachers to continue to write. Blessed with a loving supportive family growing up, I was able to explore my options which at times have been put into use in my stories. The Navy--and fate, afforded me the opportunity to meet my Army, "Annapolis-native" husband and team up with him to parent our two beautiful daughters. 

Years ago, my husband gave me the best birthday present ever--a laptop, a membership to Romance Writers of America and a goal to complete a  manuscript for submission by my next birthday. I did it. WANTED: ONE GHOST is my début novel. Believe in Fate!    

WANTED: ONE GHOST— INTERVIEW


James Addison talks about his role in Loni Lynne’s debut paranormal romance, WANTED: ONE GHOST  arriving June 3, 2013 from Crescent Moon Press:

Nancy:  Thank you for being here today on my blog. I love your costume, James.
James: Actually, this is my normal clothing. I’m most comfortable in breeches and linen shirts. I’m having tea with the Friends of Kings Mill, Maryland Ladies Auxiliary later today.  I’m part of the festivities for Kings Mill Days these next few weeks. Dr. Freelane from the historical society thought I would make a perfect ‘James Addison’.
 Nancy: Who better to play you than—‘you’.
James: My thoughts exactly!  So, what would you like to know, my friend?
 Nancy: Your character—
James: I have superb character! (He preens)  It was a joke.
 Nancy: Of course.  As I was saying, your character is unique.  You are over two hundred and fifty years old?
James: Nearly 271 years of age actually. I was born December 16 in the year of our Lord, 1742 in England.
 Nancy: Wait a minute! You don’t look a day over thirty-five.
James: (Laughing) Actually I was killed at the age of thirty and two.  I’ve been haunting Kings Mill, Maryland since.  I think in whatever realm I was in, there is no sense of time.
 Nancy: So you’ve been here since 1774? 
James: As a spirit…yes.  It wasn’t until Dr. April Branford rescued me from my hellish wanderings a few days ago that I was able to interact with others.  It’s rather odd really. I’ve been here, seen the changes in time, and yet have not been able to interact at all. I was as shocked as she to realize she could see me, much less communicate with me.
 Nancy: Dr. Branford, tell me about her.
James: Ah yes! She’s saucy and sweet, and as intelligent as I’ve ever known a person to be—and has this unusual gift for being able to touch things and tell their past. She calls it psychometry.  In my day she might have been considered a witch.
 Nancy: You were a ghost when she met you?
James: It was a ghost tour, really. She actually thought I was one of the tour guides. I didn’t have the heart to tell her otherwise. It might have frightened her. So when we met up again at the cemetery on All Hallows Eve, I didn’t think anything about it until—(he grins and shakes his head)
 Nancy: Until what?
James: I’ll let you all read that scene for yourselves:

Excerpt from Wanted: One Ghost
The roots of the firs were tangled and exposed in areas, moss and lichen grew around the bottom of the obelisk grave marker, a layer of dead branches and fan-like fir needles surrounded the base. April could read the month and year of his death but the date was a bit obscure.
She buried her nose into a fresh tissue as she held back a sneeze so she didn’t alert the rest of the group of her whereabouts.
Wiping her nose she knelt in front of the tombstone and placed the end of the flashlight between her teeth to give her direct light on what she was doing. The soggy ground soaked into the knees of her jeans. She could hear the faint voices of the group from just over the rise, yet she felt a prickling of unease. Glancing around, she didn’t see anything.
She wiped moisture from the front of the headstone with her scarf, revealing the blackened embossing on the aged marble. Angling the paper over part of the intricate design, she fumbled with the pencil in her gloved hand. The cumbersome gloves had to go. Removing the offending obstacles and tossing them to the side, April rubbed her pencil over the markings, steadying herself against the marble with her other hand.
A jolt of heat coursed from her palm to her shoulder and she jerked back. Falling onto her bottom, she dropped the pencil and paper. Nearly choking on the flashlight, she threw the light to the side and fought to catch her breath. Still tingling from the shock, she shook her arm to relieve the pain.
She picked up the flashlight again and slowly approached the gravestone. Her heart thudded in her ears. Reaching out for the paper and pencil she had dropped, she kept her eye on the stone as if waiting for it to move. Cautiously, she leaned forward and touched it. The marble was as cold and even-surfaced as an old tombstone in late October should be.
Confused, she inched away on her knees, backing away from the headstone, a frightening wariness settling over her as she slowly stood up and continued moving cautiously away from the monument.
“Henry Samuel is not worthy of your fascination, Dr. Branford.”
April gasped and whirled, shining the flashlight into the night. There, mere inches in front of her, stood her mysterious tour guide. A moment of relief caused her to catch her breath before the toe of her boot caught on a loose tree root, sending her falling through a chilly mist of air. She landed on her hands and knees.
Quickly, she turned over and stared up at her re-enactor, who stood between her and Henry Samuel’s grave. So close she should have fallen into him. And then the truth of the situation hit her. She crab crawled away from him and the tombstone, her eyes wide with horror.
She couldn’t think. “Oh my God! Oh my God!” Her voice shook with the only words she could say.
He smiled down at her, tilting his tricorne back on his head, revealing those damn hypnotic eyes.
 “I haven’t heard a lady say that to me for some time. Nice to know I haven’t lost my touch,” he preened.
“You’re…not…real,” April gasped, holding her chest as she tried desperately to find her footing. “You’re…a…ghost. You really are a ghost!”
 He shrugged. “I suppose so. No one has told me any differently. But then no one has been able to talk to me in two hundred and thirty-eight years. You’re the first.” With an elegant flourish, he bowed to her.
“Oh my God!” She was shaking so badly she couldn’t move. Her muscles had frozen. The seat of her jeans was wet but she wasn’t sure if she had peed herself or the damp ground had soaked into them.
He extended his hand in a gentlemanly fashion to help her up, but she only stared at the proffered limb. He sighed.
“Of course. It would do me no good to try and help you up since I’m…”
“…not real. You’re not real. This isn’t happening to me.” April closed her eyes and tried to repeat the mantra over and over again, hoping her mental state would finally sort out the situation and thrust her back into reality. She opened her eyes. He was still there, his infuriatingly charming smile, just short of a laugh, etched into one devilishly handsome face.
Scrambling for purchase she grabbed her articles, keeping a close eye on her specter and quickly walked backwards down the knoll until she was on the cobblestone path. She had to get out of here. Where was the damn exit!


 Nancy: But you’re not a ghost now.
James: No. That is something April will have to explain but I’m not sure she knows all the details either. I still think it has to do with Fate. I’ve been dead for 238 years but never went beyond the boundaries of Kings Mill’s historical district or what I knew of my time on Earth. Then suddenly, I meet her, a historical researcher with a unique gift and I’m born anew.
 Nancy: What is next for James Addison and April Branford?
James: (Looking at his pocket watch) Oh dear! Look at the time…I really must be going. I shouldn’t let the ladies auxiliary down now, should I?
 Nancy: I get it…you can’t say.
James: Let’s just say, tell me how the story ends when you’ve read it…I’m anxious to know what happens myself.
 Nancy: James, thank you for taking time out and talking with us today. I look forward to seeing what takes place between you and April.
James: (Placing his tri-corne on his head and winks) As do I.
To see what happens to James and April, be sure to read, Wanted: One Ghost coming June 3, 2013 from Crescent Moon Press.


Loni, oh my, that was so much fun. I can’t wait to get my hands on my own copy of WANTED: ONE GHOST. Thank you again for being my guest and interviewing James was a real treat!
For more information about Loni Lynn, you can find her here:

As always, I would love to hear what you think. If you have any questions for James or Loni, ask away. I’m sure they will both write you back. Until tomorrow, 

((Hugs to all))
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed
Release date 29 April2013

Thursday, April 25, 2013

V IS FOR VALUE YOURSELF


Good morning everyone,
This is going to be a short post today. I'm rolling up on my short soap box for a moment, but please stick around. 

I have really valued the experience I have had with  the A to Z challenge. The one thing that stood out to me as I clicked on different blogs each day is how unique each blog was. That's because we are all very unique, with our own special talents, our own unique points of view---our own unique way of understanding this life we are all trying to live. We are all special, wonderful, amazing, individuals. 

So here is my question. Why are we so hard on ourselves and others? Why do we try to tear down what isn't exactly like us? Why can't we appreciate, VALUE our own uniqueness? Maybe if we could see how wonderful we really are, accept it, and revel in the glory of who we are, then maybe we would be able to appreciate, VALUE the uniqueness in others. 

My mother use to tell me that there is no way you can love others until you love yourself. She was an amazing woman. Listen to her! Take a good look at yourself and find something to love, something to VALUE. 

Maybe the eleventh commandment should have read: Love yourself as I have loved you--- so you can love another.

My thought for the day. I'll get off my soap box now. Thanks so much for reading. I would love to hear from you if you have a moment to comment. Just click on the tiny pencil at the bottom of this post.

Hugs to all,
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed
Release date: 29 April 2013--4 days! YEA!!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

U IS FOR THE ULTIMATE EASY CARNE ASADA [MY VERSION OF A MEXICAN BEEF STEW]


Happy Wednesday Everyone!

This is what we are having for dinner tonight.  Carne Asada is such an easy dish, and out of all my recipes, it’s my favorite. I have given you the recipe for the stove-top version, but if your day is hectic, all the ingredients can be placed in a crock pot together and slow-cooked all day. Just reduce the amount of water you add. You don’t have to have the rice, but my family likes it that way. Without it, it is just a nice chunky chili that can be topped with chopped tomatoes, jalapenos, onion and cheese. Make enough for leftovers because this recipe is wonderful the next day and it freezes beautifully.
I hope you enjoy it. Please let me know what you think about it.

Hugs to all

Nancy C. Weeks
Author to In the Shadow of Greed
Release date, 29 April 2013

Carne Asada
Ingredients
  • 1 lb beef stew meat [I also buy a nice chuck roast and cut it myself]
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cans of cut or stew tomatoes [14 oz]
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder ( only 1 tablespoon if friends have a weak stomach)
  • season salt [I love Emeril’s Original Essence
  •  1 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • olive oil


Directions
Sort through the stew meat, trimming off excess fat and gristle. Cut into 1" pieces if necessary. In medium-sized, heavy pot, add olive oil. Sprinkle meat with Emeril’s seasoning and ground pepper. Place meat, garlic and onion in the pot and sauté until the meat is lightly browned. Add two or three tablespoons of beef bouillon, spices, the tomatoes, and enough water to cover meat. Cover. Bring to a boil then simmer on low heat until meat is tender. Toward the end of the cooking time (about 11/2 hr.), add flour to thicken and continue simmering, stirring from time to time for an additional 10 minute. Remove from heat and serve over rice [recipe below]. Warm flour tortillas go well with this dish.

My Favorite Rice
Ingredients
  • 2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 white  onion, chopped
  • 4 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, halved
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 31/2 Cups Vegetable/chicken broth/water- enough to cover the rice
Directions
Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the rice and toast, stirring, 8 to 10 minutes. (Watch it carefully or the rice will burn). Add the garlic, onion, tomatoes and spices to the pan and cook additional 2 minutes. Add 3 1/2 cups water or enough to cover rice; cover and cook over medium heat until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes.
Fluff the rice with a fork; serve 


As always, I would love to hear what you think. Please take a moment and say HI!




Tuesday, April 23, 2013

T is for TAD CRISP AND HIS WONDERFUL POTTERY

Art should transcend the ordinary and cause the user to experience and contemplate beauty in creation as it is used. 


Hello everyone,

Today, I'm honored to introduce you to my wonderful, talented, potter extraordinaire, big brother, Tad Crisp. He is the best brother I could ever ask for and I’m so very proud of him. 
Tad, thanks so much for being here. I know everyone is going to want to know all about you, so I’m going to hush up and let them see what an amazing, talented man you are. Can you please tell us a little about yourself?


 Tad…


I began making pots in high school craft class back in 1969-70 and continued my love of clay through college where it lured me away from intended majors in biology and anthropology to fine arts. In 1977, I graduated from Corpus Christi State University (now Texas A&M of Corpus Christi, Texas) with a Bachelor of Studio Arts, and an emphasis (almost 30 semester hours) in Ceramics/Pottery. Immediately following graduation (in December of 1977), I joined the Navy.

In the Navy, pottery just was not a possibility, so I diverted my creative attentions toward developing graphic design, illustration and calligraphy skills. There is no direct route to becoming a Navy Artist ­(Illustrator/Draftsman), but after spending  six years in the Navy (five of them at sea), I was able to become an Illustrator/Draftsman, and served four years in that vocation.


Upon receiving a honorable discharge from the Navy in 1988, I went to work in the graphic design field where I have worked for the last nineteen years. After being away from my love of clay for twenty-five years, I settled into my beautiful, Tennessee backwoods, and built a pottery studio. It has not been easy getting back on the proverbial bicycle, but I’m back in the swing of things, and hope to make pottery a major part of my productive life from this point forward.


Why Pottery?



Pottery is as old as civilization itself. In Genesis 2:7, the Scriptures say that the Lord God formed man [of] the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and he became a living being. So, according to the Scriptures, God made us out of the dust of the earth, and we have been trying make stuff out of the same clay ever since. Clay is simply dirt. It is made up primarily of Alumina and Silica, along with a number of other minerals that contribute to color and density. The art of ceramics is really just making art out of the dust of the ground. 



Pottery, unlike most art forms produced today, defies the urgent nature of our society. Clay requires time to form, time to dry, and must be worked at key times during this drying process. There are things that may be done to speed up some of these processes, but from start to finish, the average pot takes two to three weeks from start to firing (and much longer for larger pieces). This allows numerous reflections on both design and purpose as the piece matures toward completion.


Art should transcend the ordinary and cause the user to experience and contemplate beauty in creation as it is used. A well-designed and well-made teapot, for example, is not merely a vessel for dispensing steeped beverages. Instead, while it is fully capable of dispensing these beverages, it is also capable of drawing the user into an aesthetic experience, and enhancing the joy of simply having tea. 



Stoneware and porcelain pottery is very functional. It is dishwasher safe, microwave safe (though the high iron clay bodies may heat up a bit when microwave), oven safe and in some cultures is even used on top of the stove (though this is not recommended). 


The purpose of art pottery is to bring truth and beauty to everyday life. Art has not always been sophisticated and separated from life, detached for a special appreciation. In the beginning, art was merely an aesthetic treatment of things used in everyday life. Art ought to have both a physical and a spiritual or “soulish” component.




Not long ago in our history, just about anything one used in life was handmade from clay, wood, leather or metal. We have become so advanced in our culture that we have gotten away from some of these simpler handmade forms.

Ceramics is terribly incompatible with our modern “instant gratification” culture. Wet clay is formed into pots and ­allowed to dry for a couple of weeks, then it is fired once in what is called a bisque firing. Once the clay has been changed from clay to ceramic, it is no longer fragile and cannot be dissolved or recycled back into the bucket and used again. At this point, it is glazed and fired again. This can take a week (or however long it takes to fill the kiln). So, for instance, ­if you want to order a coffee cup, it can take at least three weeks until you see it, more than likely a month.


Pottery is “touchable art.” It is something that rewards the participant for making time in his/her day to spend with it. 




It is Tad’s hope that the Golden Hollow Pottery may contribute to the experience of beauty in the lives of his customers as they live in our increasingly chaotic culture.

Enjoy the variations of design and beauty!








For more information about Tad or to contact him for an order, you can reach him here:


Email: tad@goldenhollowpottery.com

Tad, thanks again for being here today. To my blog buddies, please take a minute to tell me about your talented family or just drop a comment to say hi. I love hearing from you.

((Hugs to all))
Nancy C. Weeks
Author of In the Shadow of Greed
Release date 29 April 2013
Pre-order on Amazon



Monday, April 22, 2013

S is for Sharon Buchbinder’s New Release, OBSESSION


Happy Monday, Everyone!

I'm so excited to have my friend and wonderful author, Sharon Buchbinder back on my blog. She just released her new novel, OBSESSION. 


I have a great respect for authors like Sharon who are willing to write about the tough topics that touch us all. Sharon’s OBSESSION doesn't just give the reader an exciting romantic tale, but she opens our eyes to the important issues we all need to be aware of because they effect everyone. This is what Sharon has to say about the real-life story behind OBSESSION.

While OBSESSION is a work of fiction, the story is set in real world situations. As of this writing, drug cartels continue to rule with iron fists in many areas of Mexico. The Sierra Madre remains an arduous terrain largely populated by the Tarahumaran people and goats. People still flock to cults and delusional, charismatic leaders, despite the lessons learned from Jonestown. And, sadly, human trafficking, a thirty-two-billion dollar-a-year business, occurs in everyone’s backyards.

Sharon Buchbinder, you are one classy lady and I’m honor to have you here today. Thank-you!


Here is the book trailer for OBSESSION:



OBSESSION Blurb

A year after a barbaric childbirth, complete with a near-death experience and an encounter with her guardian angel, Angie Edmonds is just happy she and her son, Jake, are alive. She's finally in a good place: clean, sober, and employed as a defense attorney. But at the end of a long work day, she finds herself in a parent's worst nightmare: Jake has been kidnapped and taken across the Mexican border by a cult leader who believes the child is the "Chosen One."

Stymied by the US and Mexican legal systems, Angie is forced to ask the head of a Mexican crime syndicate for help. Much to her chagrin, she must work with Alejandro Torres, a dangerously attractive criminal and the drug lord's right-hand man. Little does she know Alejandro is an undercover federal agent, equally terrified of blowing his cover—and falling in love with her.

Excerpt:
“Who are you? Who is that giant? What did you say to him?”
The pony-tailed man flashed a grin, the smile reaching his sky-blue colored eyes, giving him an appealing boyish look. “The big guy’s name is Tio. I told Tio to truss Raul up like the pig he is and to bring him to Isabel Ramirez. She’ll know exactly what to do with him.”
“Who are you?”
The movie-star-handsome man stopped, bent down until he was eye-to-eye with Angie.
“I found your passport tossed onto Raul’s desk, Angela Edmonds from the U.S. of A. I like that name. You look like an angel.”
She shook her head and the street twirled. “I’m no angel.” She steadied herself on his well muscled, naked arm. Rather than creeping her out, the skin on skin contact with her rescuer reassured her that he was a real human and not an angel conjured up in fevered religious delusion and desperation. “You sound like an American. You haven’t answered my question. What’s your name?”
“Torres.” Still holding her ID, he strode to the driver’s side of the car, hopped in and flashed a dazzling grin. “You could call me your hero because I’m taking you to see the woman who can help you find your son. My name is Alejandro Espinosa Santoyo Torres. But most people just call me Alejandro.”
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

After working in health care delivery for years, Sharon Buchbinder became an association executive, a health care researcher, and an academic in higher education. She had it all--a terrific, supportive husband, an amazing son and a wonderful job. But that itch to write (some call it an obsession) kept beckoning her to "come on back" to writing fiction. Thanks to the kindness of family, friends, critique partners, Romance Writers of America, and Maryland Romance Writers, she is now an award-winning author published in contemporary, erotic, paranormal and romantic suspense. When not attempting to make students, colleagues, and babies laugh, she can be found herding cats, waiting on a large gray dog, fishing, dining with good friends, or writing. You can find her at www.sharonbuchbinder.com  

Paranormal Romance Guild Winner Best Mystery/Thriller, 2012

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Where Sharon Buchbinder and Obsession can be found on the Internet
Book Trailer for Obsession http://youtu.be/f1kujUWoGbk
Twitter @sbuchbinder https://twitter.com/sbuchbinder